Friday, 8 August 2008

THE LUMBER ROOM CALAMITY - Or Oracular Notes On The Benefits and Disasters Which Have Sprung From Elberry’s Misfortunes...


“This I write so that, in comparing your sorrows with mine, you may discover that yours are, in truth, nought, or at the most of small account, and so you shall come to bear them more easily.”

Peter Abelard (from the Foreword to History Calamitatum)



Here is a complex man!

Recent comments made it clear that the
Witchfinders - at the office or in your personal life - either don’t recognize
how important certain pursuits are to you, or simply don’t approve of them. And
having no wish to appear a failure in your own eyes, your feel bound to tackle
the problem.

You’re sharp, quick-witted, with an satirist's eye, subtle and
self-mocking with an acute and almost constant sense of life's irrationality.
Less reassuring will be the realisation that many who’ve already admired your
dedication to quality, your dignity, and your sense of self, have also known
Elberry the eccentric, the riddler and dissimulator who has all the irony of a
condemned person walking to the gallows. Irony gives colour to thoughts and
things in a way that not everyone understands. Indeed, you have a way with
words, a somewhat reckless appreciation of the sardonic and the grotesque. Your
writing rather transcends that of a scurrilous and witty misanthrope. You can
hold forth with some authority on topics as diverse as Manchester’s Thai
lady-boys and the Italian renaissance. You’re superbly simple, understated, yet
quite unaffected by pettiness, jealousy, and other humdrum concerns. But you
also seem to be created with a special legacy.

To wit, your condition forecasts the agony to come.

What is second nature to most of us, is misery for you. Though there
are plenty of arid personalities and characters starved by stress of
circumstances, few have that same sense of introversion, or of sealed persona
contained within itself. Indeed, your own growing isolation, objective as well
as subjective, makes you feel that you are sustained and animated by the virtual world - rather than life - and it is that which seems to have
detached you from reality. Your concerns seem distanced and uninvolved,
everything happens by proxy. The misanthrope, in truth, rarely wants to be
cured. In fact, owing largely to autosuggestive forces you seem to see your
situation as comical rather than tragic. But the literary levity used for the
darkest subjects has a very serious purpose: to rob trepidation of its terror.
For the fact of the matter is nevertheless, you’re terrified!

Nor am I sure I want to go there.

But I‘ll say this: I've never once met a gifted man who is not haunted
by his talents. Your position is difficult, your future a matter of far-reaching
complexity. The lone rider is a familiar figure in American mythology. It is his
aura, the fact that he lives on his own terms, trusting nobody but only a select
few - rather than a lot of gratuitous gunplay - which suggests inner reserves of
power as well as detachment and intense seclusion. Archetypes are a mirror of
the psyche - sometimes benign, often afflicted, occasionally genuinely
inspirational. But nothing is more suggestive of the mythological use of the
archetype than the way we respond emotionally. They are a sort of purgatory
within, or a heightened form of self-consciousness, often revealing a disturbing
depth of knowledge of an individual's dilemmas and predicaments. Little may you
know, but these are forces of extraordinary power.

So its time to carve:

Most of your intimate interests set you apart from other humans; if not
an intellectual exactly, you are certainly endowed with considerable
intellectual athleticism and substantial powers of communication. You yourself
clearly believe in the legend of your life. In your sense of mission. Two
centuries ago you might have been accused of magical incantations, witchcraft
and sorcery. Today you are frequently seen as netherworldly; and though patently
sensual, are at the same time almost asexual, savouring everything, yearning for
sensual comforts, but, as it were, vicariously, and as if fixed in unending
adolescence.

Let there be no mistake, Elberry is not a troll released from Mordor.
He is a strong, intelligent, not unfriendly elf who wrought colossal good. And
to string him from a lamp post, soak him with diesel and set fire to his butt
would be complete and utter recklessness...

Indeed, if you can make
friends with your inner self, come to terms with your own darkness, then there
will be no trouble from without. Which may also be a reminder that fortuitous
connections are often the key to advancement. And so, finally , I’ll come to
your many attempts at presenting an acceptable curriculum vitae. Nearly
as many potential employers as have been acquainted with it, refused to honour
the curriculum you’ve set forth in the past, so that it will have to be
supplemented in some fashion. And my recommendation is for you to offer this
reading with your next CV. I doubt it will advance you prospects in any way
whatsoever, but, should you succeed on the basis of this, I’ll promise you, the
rewards will be intense...

Meanwhile, in the face of the Witchfinders General - and your
considerable and varied talents - the only thing is to keep your head down and
do what the Schatzgräber did in the scenario below:


Die Schatzgräber

Ein Winzer, der am Tode lag
rief seine Kinder her und sprach :
In unsrem Weinberg liegt ein Schatz ,
grabt nur danach ! " --
Auf welchem Platz ? "
schrie alles laut den Vater an .
" Grabt nur " -- O weh, da starb der Mann !


Kaum war der Alte beigeschafft ,
so grub man nach mit Leibeskraft
Mit Hacke, Karst und Spaten,
den Weinberg um und um gescharrt .
Da war kein Kloß, der ruhig blieb ,
man warf die Erde gar durch`s Sieb .
Und zog die Harken kreuz und quer
nach jedem Steinchen hin und her ;
.Alleine, da ward kein Schatz verspürt ,
und jeder hielt sich angeführt .

Doch kaum erschien das nächste Jahr ,
so nahm man mit Erstaunen wahr
das jede Rebe dreifach trug .
Da wurden erst die Söhne klug
Sie gruben nun jahrein , jahraus
Des Schatzes immer mehr heraus.


Gottfried August Bürger (1747 - 1794)



11 comments:

elberry said...

Thank you, Miss Dreamy, that is certainly one of the nicest things anyone's written about me. It does seem true to me. i would write more but don't want to open my head too much.

i feel things will change this October but don't know just how traumatic the change will be. There may well be yet more agony in store but then most of the last 32 years have been fairly agonised; the thing seems to be to take it as lightly as possible.

Thanks again, i shall print this out and stick it in my big Florentine journal to muse on at leisure.

mutleythedog said...

I didnt read it all as it was too long and I have a very short attention span... aber ficken Deutsche?

Mindesten du kannst das verruckte schiesse ubersetzen im eine verstandlich sprache. Zum beispiel Englische...

Selena Dreamy said...

Aber Mutley, jetzt muss ich lachen. Das Geheimnis liegt im Unbekannten und im Rätsel liegt die Lösung...

Or in plain English:

the mysterious poem is part of the deal. Oracles are never straightforward. They present you with riddles, and your own unconscious will adopt that which applies. The diviner is the oracle, the divinee is the discoverer

See - it’s simple

Selena Dreamy said...

Oh, and another thing the Oracle tells me:
stop watching Eastenders Mutley - or you’ll never leave the Ghetto...!!!

elberry said...

i just had the poem translated by a friend. Thank you, it makes a lot of sense!

Jonathan said...

"if not
an intellectual exactly, you are certainly endowed with considerable
intellectual athleticism and substantial powers of communication."

Hmmm....how come he is not a real intellectual? He seems very intellectual to me -having as he does his entire stance to life informed by a guiding quest to understand. In this sense he seems then even more intellectual than many a scholar who are often inspired only to understand their specialist concerns, abstracted from life.

Do you mean rather that he is not a 'typical' intellectual, because of his additional pranksterish, and erotically playful personas. But aren't they all additional to Elberry as intellectual, as opposed to contradicting this in and about him. Must the mind be a 'dry blood beast'?

Fascinating account in any case and clearly meeting the subject's approval.

Helen said...

I was just discussing with a friend the necessity of having an honest voice that points out the paradigms that govern our lives. An oracle would do, too.

Selena Dreamy said...

...happy to oblige, Helen - all I need is your star-sign!

D.

Helen said...

I would be most honored!

6:32 a.m. May 7, 1976

Selena Dreamy said...

Oooops...that was unnecessary - but, nevertheless, thank you so much. I shall wrest your secrets from the stars...

Helen said...

I'm known for overkill, Miss Dreamy ; )